If your land was damaged by increased liquefaction vulnerability (ILV), and EQC settled your land claim by paying diminution of value (DoV), you may be eligible to receive further payment for the additional costs to repair the land, or the value of the damaged land.
Grant Shand Barristers & Solicitors launched this class action in September 2021. We believe homeowners should be properly compensated for their land that was damaged by ILV, and EQC’s DoV methodology fails to achieve this.
What is the EQC Land ILV Class Action about?
EQC insures residential land under s19 of the Earthquake Commission Act 1993 with a cap for the residential land claim set at the lesser of:
the value of the minimum lot size of the operative district plan;
an area of land of 4,000 square metres; or
the area of land actually lost or damaged.
EQC deemed that there were just under 4,000 properties in the ‘green zone’ where the land had been damaged by increased liquefaction vulnerability (ILV). These properties that had been damaged by ILV required significant amounts to be spent on them to repair the land, and in many cases, the cost to repair the land would have exceeded the cap (as set out above).
EQC determined that rather than pay homeowners what the costs would be to repair the land (up to the appropriate cap) they would instead pay for the loss in value of the land, this was called diminution of value (DoV).
We believe that payment for the ILV damage to residential land by DoV does not correctly follow the EQC Act and that payment should be made for the costs of the repairs (up to the relevant cap).
Can I join the EQC Land ILV Class Action?
To be able to join this class action you need to ensure that you meet all of the qualifying criteria listed below (taken from the [draft] application to the Court for a Representative Order)
(1) The current or former owner who has the relevant insurable interest for the purpose of EQC claims (owner) of residential land that was insured by s19 of the Earthquake Commission Act 1993 (EQC Act) during the Canterbury Earthquake Sequence that commenced on 4 September 2010 and ended on 23 December 2011.
(2) The residential land suffered natural disaster damage in an earthquake in the Canterbury Earthquake Sequence.
(3) The owner of the residential land at the time of the Canterbury Earthquake Sequence made claim(s) to EQC for the natural disaster damage.
(4) EQC accepted the land claim(s) for natural disaster damage.
(5) EQC assessed the land claim(s) for natural disaster damage and deemed that the land was damaged by increased liquefaction vulnerability (ILV).
(6) EQC by itself or its agents purported to settle the land claim(s) for natural disaster damage under ss19 and 29 of the EQC Act by way of payment (in full or in part) calculated using the diminution of value (DOV) methodology for ILV.
(7) The owner suffered a loss as the payment in paragraph 6 above was less than what they were entitled to under ss19 and 29 of the EQC Act.
(8) The date that the owner received the payment in paragraph 6 above is/was within six years of 10 September 2021.
(9) There is no binding settlement agreement between the EQC and the owner or any former owner of the residential land in respect of land claim(s) made for natural disaster damage.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How much will it cost me to join this EQC Land ILV Class Action?
We will charge you a simple and clear fixed fee that we will deduct off any settlement. We will never ask you to pay us any money, and if the minimum fixed fee is greater than the amount due to you, then there is no charge.
Group members will have no liability for legal costs if the class action is unsuccessful.
This class action is currently not funded by a litigation funder; however, this may change as the case develops. If this class action does become funded by a litigation funder it will not change the fee structure that is detailed in the Fees section below (but you may need to complete a funding agreement with the litigation funder).
How much money will I get?
It is impossible at this stage to provide any specific figure on what you could expect to receive.
This is due to a variety of factors that are unique to each homeowner’s situation (for example how much EQC has already paid you, the area of land damaged, the costs to repair the land, etc.).
What are the chances for success for the EQC Land ILV Class Action?
Our team is confident that the case has strong merits, however litigation is inherently risky and it is not possible to predict the outcome, or how long the case will take.
What are the benefits of a class action?
Running each individual claim through the courts would be costly and time consuming.
Being able to combine class member’s claims that involve common questions of fact and law, reduces the average cost of litigation by only addressing the common issues once at trial, instead of multiple times.
Does it cost anything to register?
No, it costs nothing to register.
Will registering mean I become a client of Grant Shand Barristers & Solicitors?
No, registration will not make you a client of Grant Shand Barristers & Solicitors. It just gives us a way to keep you informed about developments and the progress of the class action.
We will charge you a simple and clear fixed fee that we will deduct off any judgment or settlement. We will never ask you to pay us any money, and if the minimum fixed fee is greater than the amount due to you, you will not receive anything and there will be no fees applicable.
Our Simple Fixed Fee Structure
If judgment/settlement sum is $5,000 or less, then you will not receive anything and there will be no fees applicable.
If judgment/settlement sum is between $5,001 and $25,000, our fixed fee is $5,000.
If judgment/settlement sum is between $25,001 and $50,000, our fixed fee is $7,500.
If judgment/settlement sum is between $50,001 and $75,000, our fixed fee is $10,000.
If judgment/settlement sum is between $75,001 and $100,000, our fixed fee is $12,500.
If judgment/settlement sum is greater than $100,001, then our fixed fee is $15,000.